Rising Pune Supergiant suffered a shocking middle-order collapse before a Manoj Tiwary cameo took them to 161 for 8 against Royal Challengers Bangalore in an Indian Premier League encounter, here today. It was a below-par score by Pune as they were cruising along at 127 for 2 courtesy 58-run stand between skipper Steve Smith (27) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni (28) before wickets fell in a clutch. With addition of only three runs, Pune lost five wickets in a space of nine deliveries with most of the batsmen falling prey to the slowish nature of the track committing to their shots too early. Dhoni and Smith were bowled off successive deliveries while Ben Stokes was also cleaned up. Tottering at 130 for 7, Tiwary played an absolute cameo scoring 27 off 10 balls including a 19-run penultimate over off Shane Watson that had three boundaries and a straight six into the sight screen. Had it not been for Tiwary, Pune would have landed woefully short of the target. Pune started the innings well with Ajinkya Rahane (30 off 25 balls) and Rahul Tripathi (31 off 23 balls) adding 63 for the opening stand. Rahane hit a flurry of boundaries off the pacers Adam Milne (2/27) and Watson before a googly from Samuel Badree cleaned him up. Tripathi was gone when drove uppishly with skipper Virat Kohli pulling off an absolute stunner at short extra cover. Dhoni and Smith joined forces at 69 for two. Dhoni played a couple cut shots behind point to get boundaries. But his inability to get scoreboard moving was again evident as his 28 came off 25 balls which also had a huge six off Yzvendra Chahal delivery that landed on the Chinnaswamy rooftop. In fact Dhoni scored 18 runs off boundaries in four balls which effectively meant that the rest of the 10 runs came off 21 deliveries.
However just when they were in a position to cut loose, the collapse occured.
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